Jarrad Page is starting to get accustomed to being the odd man out. In his sixth NFL season, he finds himself on his fourth team in three years and, in the case of the "Dream Team" in Philadelphia, a victim of circumstance.
It wasn't always that way for the new Viking, who was signed Tuesday when the team placed safeties Tyrell Johnson and Husain Abdullah on season-ending injured reserve. Page became a starter late in his rookie season in Kansas City, starting the final 39 games he played with the Chiefs. He signed with the Patriots in 2010, but started just one of the 10 games he played and became a free agent again after the season. He was one the numerous signings of the so-called Dream Team in Philadelphia, but, like so many plans with the Eagles, his came crashing and burning along with them.
There is an adage that says a player doesn't lose his job due to injury. Most people know that it happens all the time, and Page said his exodus from the sinking Dream Team ship was the result of getting hurt – pure and simple.
"I had an injury against Buffalo and I was inactive the next game," Page said. "They gave Kurt Coleman a chance to start and he came out and made three interceptions. You've got to take advantage of opportunities and that's what he did. I was kind of fighting from behind the 8-ball at that point trying to get back out on the field. We had five safeties on the roster and they decided to make the move. If I had got three interceptions, I would have still been there."
Page said that he has been searching for a home to stay in over the last two seasons. Things didn't work out in New England or Philadelphia, so he hopes the third team will be the charm. He realizes that everything he does on the field will be examined not only by his coaching staff, but everyone else throughout the league. The eye in the sky never closes, and putting plays on film is what attracted a team in need like the Vikings.
"Every time you go out on the field, it's an audition for the 31 other teams," Page said. "Your team is evaluating your performance, but so is everyone else."
While he is new to the Vikings, Page said he gained a lot experience in the Cover-2 scheme the Vikings run while with the Chiefs, so he doesn't have a big learning curve with the Vikings. He said the most difficult part is the relocation to a new city and getting acclimated with his new surroundings. He said he's in new territory because he's never joined a team midstream during the season, but he is encouraged with what he sees.
"I don't know, because I've never done it before," Page said. "It's been a pretty easy transition. Things are clicking. I love the coaching staff and know a few guys in the locker room. It hasn't been hard."
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.
Page confident with Vikings' system
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